Guwahati : Autonomous State Demand Committee along with the Karbi Students’s Association (KSA) and its women’s wing, KNCA have opposed ST(H) category to Bodo community.
Taking exception to the government’s reported move to grant ST(H) status to Bodo community, the ASDC, KSA and women’s wing of KNCA have widely defied the government’s willingness to grant Schedule tribe (Hills) status to the Bodo community domiciled in Karbi Anglong and Dima hasao autonomous districts of Assam.
ST(H) category to Bodo
The organisations, through a joint press statement have opposes the move mentioning that the tribes living in hills are absolutely distinct from the tribes of other areas, which is also recognized by anthropologists and social scientists.
They further added that the hill tribes are insular economically, socially and educationally more backward than other tribes. The British recognized this fact and that is the main reason behind demarcating the hills areas as excluded and partially excluded areas. That is why, Article 330 (1) (b) and (c) were incorporated in the constitution reserving seats in the Assembly and parliament for the tribes belonging to Autonomous Districts only. This is the reason behind making two different lists of tribes in the state of Assam,” the release stated.
Opposition over ST(H) category to Bodo
The ASDC also pointed out that Part II of the Constitution (ST) order 1950 that applies to Assam has two different lists which include 15 tribes including 37 Kuki sub-tribes but Bodo Kachari was not included. Claiming that the tribe was not included since anthropologically they knew that Bodos don’t come from the hills and hence they were not included in that category and very few were living in the hills in the 1950s but migrated to the hills from the plains after 1960.
Grant of ST(H) category to Bodo
The very granting of ST(H) status to the Bodo community will dilute the very essence of giving ST status to tribals as now the more backward tribals have to compete with the educationally more advanced Bodos for government jobs,” the statement cited.